The Reason for California’s Covid-19 Crisis
California has a hyper-efficient health care system that usually runs well, Olga Khazan reports in The Atlantic. But it’s in trouble in the pandemic. The state is experiencing a shortage of ventilators and overwhelmed ICUs. Khazan reports:
The health-care system in California is fraying because the state has tried to run its health system efficiently. The principles are simple: Keep patients out of hospitals, funnel people to primary-care doctors, and don’t build hospitals you don’t need. In normal times, that strategy would make perfect sense. Typically, doctors’ trying to treat patients outside of hospitals is smart. Medical advances mean that procedures such as mole removals and knee replacements can be done in just a few hours instead of a few days. And holding patients in hospital beds is much more expensive than sending them home, while people languishing in hospitals risk acquiring infections.
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